sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ
The word "evangelization", though rooted solidly in both Scripture and Tradition, still sounds strange to many Catholics. It means, literally, "'communication of the gospel," the spreading of the good news of Jesus Christ. Its root word, the Greek Euangelizo, means simply "good news." As Catholics we have always evangelized, but perhaps we have not identified it as such. When did we first learn of Jesus? Who taught us our first prayers? Who passed on their faith to us? To whom are we passing on our faith? Over the centuries the Catholic faith has been handed on and shared with others. This is evangelization.
Jesus, the Good News of God, was and is the greatest evangelizer. Jesus was sent "to bring good news to the poor; to proclaim release to captives and recovery of sight to the blind; to let the oppressed go free; and to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor."
The disciples of Jesus when commissioned by him to "Go into the whole world and proclaim the Good News to all of creation," became the evangelizing church.
- Sharing the gift of faith that has been given to us
- An essential mission of the Church
- A basic duty of all the baptized: laity, religious and clergy
In essence, evangelization is a way of life.
- Calling active believers to even deeper faith
- Bringing the message of Christ to inactive Catholics
- Inviting people to join the Catholic Church
- Making the Gospel real by applying it to the issues and conditions of our lives